« PreviousContinue »
AIDS AFFORDED TO POOR STUDENTS,
ENCOURAGEMENTS OFFERED TO DILIGENT STUDENTS,
REWARDS CONFERRED ON SUCCESSFUL STUDENTS,
THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE;
TO WHICH IS PREFIXED,
A COLLECTION OF MAXIMS, APHORISMS, &c.
DESIGNED FOR THE USE OF LEARNERS.
BY ROBERT POTTS, M.A
This little book, as its title-page declares, is designed for the use of learners
, and especially for those who intend to complete their education at the University of Cambridge.
And in order that it may not be misunderstood, the reader is especially requested to bear in mind, that this compilation is put forth on the sole responsibility of the writer, without the sanction of any authority ; and if it have any claims to public attention, they rest entirely on the accuracy of the views it exhibits, and the correctness of the statements it contains.
Truth and utility have been the aim of the writer, and though he has employed every means within his power to ensure correctness and avoid error, he is not insensible of the imperfection of his work ; and although oversights and inaccuracies may be found, yet he presumes to hope that there are not any of such a nature as to render his book other than a safe and trusty guide to learners.
It is believed that those students who are sensible of their responsibility for the use and improvement of their time and talents, may be influenced by encouragements and rewards in proceeding through their course of disciplinal studies ; and that those who are resolved to avoid failure and secure success in their preparation for the duties of life, may find some useful suggestions for that purpose in the collection of maxims, aphorisms, and extracts which form the prefix to this little volume. They are drawn from the works of men, some of them the most distinguished in their generation, whose writings form a rich storehouse of intellectual treasures. In making the selection, if the compiler has succeeded in bringing great truths and sound principles before the minds of learners in a plain and intelligible form, he has not failed in this portion of his task.
The chief sources from which has been drawn the account of the aids, encouragements, and rewards open to students at Cambridge, are the Report of Her Majesty's Commissioners for enquiring into the state, discipline, studies, and revenues of
the University and Colleges of Cambridge;" and the documents relating to them published by direction of the Commissioners. Other available sources of information within the reach of the compiler have been employed, besides the assistance of several friends and other members of the University, to whom the writer is under very great obligations.
It is a subject of regret that many of the exhibitions and scholarships left for the maintenance of poor scholars at the Universities, being fixed payments in money from rent-charges, have remained stationary. These payments at the times they were first granted were sufficient for the purpose; but at the present day they are no longer so; for in the progress of time it has been found, that as land has increased, so money has diminished, in value. In cases, however, where the benefactions have been left or invested in land, the revenues have increased and the design of the benefactor has not been defeated.
Next in importance to the Universities come the cathedral grammar-schools, with their ample provision, ordained by the statutes of Henry VIII., for the maintenance of students in divinity at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. After the dissolution of the monasteries, King Henry VIII. proceeded to the reformation of the older cathedrals and the erection of other cathedral bodies with new sees. In the preamble of the statutes he gave for their government, it is stated, in connexion with their main design, to be one of the objects, that “youth might be liberally trained, &c. to the glory of Almighty God, and the common welfare and happiness of the subjects of this realm.” For the purpose of securing this important object, liberal provision was ordained by the statutes to be made from the cathedral funds, both for the maintenance of grammar scholars, and of students of divinity selected from them at the Universities. For instance, the statutes of Canterbury cathedral ordain, that from the revenues of the cathedral, there shall be 50 grammar boys maintained and educated at the cathedral school, and 24 poor students at the Universities, 12 at Oxford and 12 at Cambridge. The statutes of Worcester cathedral direct that there shall be 40 grammar scholars in the cathedral school and 12 students of divinity at the Universities, main
tained out of the cathedral funds. The statutes of Rochester direct that 20 grammar boys shall be maintained and educated in the cathedral school, and four students at the Universities. It may be especially remarked, that the sums prescribed for these purposes are stated not separately, but in the list of expenses for the support of the cathedral, from the dean down to the lowest menial in the establishment.
In the revised cathedral statutes of Queen Elizabeth the intention of King Henry VIII. with respect to the grammarscholars and the students at the Universities is preserved in these words: “Moreover, we direct that out of the whole number of grammar boys who have their sustentation in our cathedral church of there be for ever maintained of those who have made greater progress than the rest *
in our University of Cambridge, and the same number at Oxford.”
It must not be denied, that within the last few years some two or three of the cathedral bodies have established theological colleges in connexion with their cathedrals. This effort on their part is designed to supply what was considered to be deficient in the theological education of graduates of the Universities. How far these new institutions are likely to form sound ministers of the Church of England, may perhaps appear from two or three opinions expressed at the end of the evidence returned to the Cathedral Commissioners.
The Rev. F. Jeune, D.D. master of Pembroke College, Oxford, remarks that, “It is of great moment, that the ministers of the Church of England should be men of enlarged views, and as free as possible from the spirit which is fostered so carefully in the Church of Rome, by the seclusion of her future ministers in seminaries altogether ecclesiastical.”
The Rev. R. Harington, D.D. Principal of Brasenose College, writes, “If a young man, by the time he has reached the age of two or three and twenty years, has not acquired sufficient sobriety of character to pursue his theological studies with the same advantage at the University as in the comparative seclusion of a Cathedral College, it will be a measure of very doubt
• In those Cathedral Schools, where there are 50, 40, 24, or 18 Grammar Scholars, there shall always be 10, 8, 4, or 2 students at the Universities respectively.